Judicial candidate list pared to four

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SANDPOINT — The list of candidates vying to fill a pending vacancy on the 1st District bench has been narrowed.

The Idaho Judicial Council announced on Thursday that the field of candidates to succeed Judge Steve Verby has been reduced from six to four.

Bonner County Magistrate Court Judge Barbara Buchanan, St. Maries attorney Richard Christensen, Sandpoint attorney Brent Featherston and Kootenai County Magistrate Court Judge Scott Wayman were placed on the short list.

Boundary County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Tevis Hull and Coeur d’Alene attorney Linda Payne did not make the short list.

All six candidates were interviewed by the judicial council in Sandpoint on Wednesday. The council began deliberating shortly after the interviews were concluded.

Former District Judge James Michaud was the last Bonner County judge to be appointed via the judicial council selection process. Michaud was appointed 25 years ago and was ultimately succeeded by Verby.

Verby announced in August he would transition to senior status in January of next year. Verby will still continue to hear cases as a senior district judge.

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